By Solomon T. Gaye, Sr.
Sanniqueillie-Mahn, Nimba County’s District Education Officer (DEO) says enrollment at various public and private academic schools has dropped considerably while attendance in the ‘Sande Bush’ schooling has increased dramatically.
DEO Lemuel G. Saye told this paper that there is more attendance in bush schools as compared to academic programming in this year, in both private and public schools, if not limited to Sanniqueillie-Mahn District in Nimba County.
He stated among many things that there is low attendance or enrollment in the 37 schools in the Sanniqueillie-Mahn Education District of the County because most of the girls of
School-going ages have preferred sande schooling to academic schooling.
Saye claimed that Sande school members have taken over the government Lugbehyee School in Lugbehyee Town thereby constructing a camp near the structure thus creating fear among those other students who are desirous of learning as well as the school’s administration.
He added that many of those girls registered at the beginning of academic 2021/2022 but surprisingly, abandoned their learning for bush schooling perhaps upon the directive of their parents or families respectively.
However, some local authorities have frowned at such habit. Elder Joseph Wogie frowned at Paramount Chiefs and Commissioners working with the Internal Affairs Ministry for their alleged failure to implement government’s mandate to put stop to Sande practices during academic schooling or programming in the nine electoral districts in Nimba County.
He said government must put stop to the activities of sande and poro schools’ activities so as to enable those determined young boys and girls get prepared for the future, not only for Nimba but for their country (Liberia) in general.
On the same subject, Bain- Garr One(1) DEO, Abel Legay said Sande or bush school is a contributing factor to the low enrollment of academic schooling mainly of females in the Nimba County Schools System which is creating hardship on parents and school administrations as well.
Since the beginning of 2021/2022, sande and poro practices have increased speedily under the watchful eyes of the County’s administration headed by Superintendent Nelson Korquoi. For academic and bush schools to run simultaneously does not augur well and such that is obtaining is indeed a flagrant disrespect and breach of government’s mandate to put halt to the Sande and Poro practices in the country.
When this paper reached out to Yei Belleh, Gender Coordinator of Gender and Development Ministry in Nimba County, she was reportedly absent. Also, Nimba County’s Education Officer, Moses Dologbaye, when contacted by mobile phone refused to comment.